Comparison of Daytime Low-Level Cloud Properties Derived from GOES and Surface Instruments at ARM SGP


Theodore M. McHardy1, Xiquan Dong1, Baike Xi1, Mandana M. Thieman2, Patrick Minnis3, and Rabindra Palikonda2

1Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, The University of Arizona

2SSAI, Inc. Hampton, VA

3NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia, USA

The daytime single-layered low-level cloud properties retrieved by the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite system (GOES) are compared with ground-based observations and retrievals over the Department of Energy (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Southern Great Plains (SGP) Central Facility (SCF) from June 1998 through December 2006. The GOES retrievals are made via the Visible-Infrared Solar-infrared Split-window technique (VISST). Collocated pairs of GOES and ARM cloud properties are produced and comparisons are made for monthly means, diurnal means, and one-to-one for GOES and ARM collocated pairs. The parameters of interest are cloud temperature (Teff for GOES and Ttop for ARM), height (Heff and Htop), cloud-droplet effective radius (re), optical depth (τ), and liquid water path (LWP). GOES retrieved Teff, τ, and LWP have excellent agreement with ARM retrievals. Results also show that GOES retrieved mean re, τ and LWP values increase with increased solar zenith angle (SZA).